Adobe launched its Adobe Creative Cloud in April of this year. Adobe Creative Cloud covers approximately 26 applications from Adobe. From Photoshop to After Effects to Dreamweaver and others. Basically its all-you-ever-wanted-in-graphics software and then some. To see the entire list of what you get click here.
Adobe has bundled its powerhouse of image and video processing software packages, and put it up as a rental. You can rent the entire CS6 starting at only $50 a month. You get your space in the Cloud as well, 10 GB to be exact plus you can sync your documents and share them as well.
There has been confusion over the Adobe Creative Cloud. About how will it work? How it affects the existing users? Is the membership expensive compared to purchases of a box? And of course … the main question … Why did Adobe do this in the first place?
Things become clear when we answer the last question first. Why did Adobe do what it’s doing is simple: Adobe has not had much competition in its field for 22 years even though there are some great apps out there that take a small nibble out of Adobe’s market share. Adobe is the leader in the field. There is a new trend in software these days where the world is changing so quickly that a few months after you buy a product it’s just not up to date enough (a new iOS, a new device). Until the CS5 bundle products Adobe released a new full release every 2 years. That was just about enough time to plan and build a long term strategy. That worked well throughout the 90’s and even the early part of this millennium. With technology evolving quicker than ever, for Adobe to maintain its leadership position and to provide the needs of its base creative users its got to have a way to update and keep its core users up to date fast.
If we go back in time (not that much time) you will remember the whole storm between Adobe and Apple. Apple didn’t want Flash on their iPhone’s, and neither did Adobe. Adobe invested a lot of time and resources to make it possible by creating a boundler that would publish into the iOS. A few days before Adobe released Flash CS5 Apple pulled the plug on Adobe (yes they are a bully some times ;). That basically killed one of the main features of Adobe CS5 release. Even though that was a very big blow to Adobe – I would say an immoral and unfair one in my eyes – Adobe didn’t waste its time crying over it. Instead it realized that the way it does business just doesn’t work in this day and age where there are so many risk parameters out there. For Adobe to be able to give their users everything they need and more; Adobe needs to be more hands on, faster, more responsive to their users needs and the changes in technology.
The birth of inbetween releases was the answer to the first problem of having shorter intervals and being more reactive. To create changes that would effect users within 12 months with inbetween releases (every 12 months with Adobe CS5.5 and we can expect a CS 6.5 probably as well…).
This solved a lot of issues. Yet some tools need urgent attention inbetween builds. Adobe can’t give them away for free they are trying to make an income a well. The best solution would be to have memberships instead of sales. Enabling Adobe to provide the changes as soon as there are changes. Instead of making users wait for updates annually.
This is exactly what the cloud in heart is all about. It’s about providing the most cutting edge solutions as soon as they are ready. Instead of having to wait for 2 years until the solutions become more widely available. By having members that are subscribing members its easier from a businesses perspective to give members the most up to date tools, without needing to hold back features. We expect to see more updates inbetween releases. The more we see this new membership type; the more it will expand and mature.
What does it mean for you – the layman? Those who are starting out in the field of image processing and don’t have the $700 to pay up front for the software, paying $50 per month is a great deal. If you own the CS suites till 5.5, then you can get the Cloud membership for just $30 a month. You will immediately get access to the latest versions of the CS. A really nice enticing feature that Adobe has put in: users of Cloud do not have to wait for new releases as they are updated immediately. On the other hand, if you have CS6, you will have to wait for CS7 to get those updates. The wait is like 18 months for the new version to come.
Lets say you have a project which will last 3 months. You obviously don’t want to spend the high costs for purchasing the software. What do you do? Rent it! For $80 a month. Beat that. The pricing is $50 for an annual commitment and $80 for a month by month subscription
What about power users? This is a dream come true for them. At $50 a month what more can they ask for.
One can now see why Adobe has gone through the trouble of creating the Creative Cloud. To lower barrier of entry. Adobe has made its move to allow the small business owners, temporary users, and students to come and join the party. With the corporates being stingy, Adobe can tap a greater cross section of the market. This is why Adobe has done what it has.
Do remember, that this is a rental. You are paying rent for the Cloud and this money does not go towards ownership of the bundle in the Cloud. Adobe will make you connect once a month to check if you have made the payment and that is it. If you have not paid, the account will be suspended. Be sure that your files on the cloud won’t be deleted.
Coming to the collection. Getting access to Photoshop on its own is not enough to build a full site you need more tools . In the cloud you can use all or some of the tools you need to complete a project without extra fees. That is what makes this Cloud such a powerful offer. If you’re producing video, AfterEffects can map objects in a 2D video as if they were 3D, allowing foreground characters to overlap objects added to the background.
Then there are tools for publishing to smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices. The Fluid Grid layout will rearrange contents to fit the tablet or a smartphone screen. InDesign will adjust the contents of your newsletter to ensure proper display when the tablet is rotated from portrait to landscape.
Two apps currently, Muse and Edge are only available under the cover of Creative Cloud. Muse is a web publishing software that is rich and has powerful features. It lets you concentrate on designing rather than technology. It is that intuitive to use.
Edge lets you create interactive and animated content with great precision. It creates with HTML5 which is a smart move by Adobe since it expects that HTML5 will become the standard. The interface is similar to Flash so developers will find that easy and familiar ground.
To summarize, the Adobe Creative Cloud by Adobe gives you access to 26 applications, web hosting through Business Catalyst, 20 GB of space for file storing, sharing, syncing and probably more to come. By the way don’t forget to check our Adobe Creative Cloud Discount hub.